Microstructural and micro-mechanical investigation of cathodic arc evaporated ZrN/TiN multilayer coatings with varying bilayer thickness

Florian Frank, Christina Kainz, Michael Tkadletz, Christoph Czettl, Markus Pohler, Nina Schalk

Publikation: Beitrag in FachzeitschriftArtikelForschungBegutachtung

Abstract

Modifying the architecture of multilayer hard coatings allows to adjust the mechanical properties of these materials for a given application. Within this work, the effect of the bilayer thickness (Λ) and the individual sublayer thickness ratio on the microstructure and mechanical properties of ZrN/TiN multilayer coatings was investigated. Multilayer coatings with Λ of 570, 320 and 35 nm were deposited by cathodic arc evaporation and compared to TiN and ZrN single-layer coatings. The microstructure was investigated by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and scanning electron microscopy. All coatings exhibit a single phase face-centred cubic structure and a predominant (111) texture. A columnar structure was observed for all coatings and grain growth extending beyond the ZrN/TiN interfaces was evident in all multilayers. For all coatings, compressive residual stresses were determined by XRD using the sin 2ψ method, where the multilayer sample with the largest Λ exhibited the highest compressive residual stress of −1.7 ± 0.2 GPa. Lower compressive residual stresses could be correlated with decreasing Λ and decreasing ZrN:TiN thickness ratio. Nanoindentation experiments as well as micro-mechanical bending tests were conducted to assess the mechanical properties of the coatings. The ZrN/TiN multilayer sample with Λ of 35 nm showed the highest hardness of 28.0 ± 1.1 GPa. This value is similar to the TiN single-layer and higher compared to the ZrN single-layer, which exhibited a hardness of 27.9 ± 1.4 GPa and 25.8 ± 1.3 GPa, respectively. While the ZrN single-layer showed the highest fracture toughness, the ZrN/TiN multilayer samples were identified as the mechanically stiffest and strongest of the investigated coatings, since they exhibited a higher fracture stress compared to the single-layer coatings. The obtained results allow to optimise the architecture of ZrN/TiN multilayer coatings yielding the desired coating properties for application in the cutting industry.

OriginalspracheEnglisch
Aufsatznummer128070
Seitenumfang9
FachzeitschriftSurface & coatings technology
Jahrgang432.2022
Ausgabenummer25 February
Frühes Online-Datum4 Jan. 2022
DOIs
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 25 Feb. 2022

Bibliographische Notiz

Funding Information:
The authors want to thank Bernhard Sartory and Dr. Jaroslav Wosik (Materials Center Leoben) for the SEM and EDX investigations. The financial support by the Austrian Federal Ministry for Digital and Economic Affairs and the National Foundation for Research, Technology and Development is gratefully acknowledged. Further, the authors gratefully acknowledge the financial support under the scope of the COMET program within the K2 Center “Integrated Computational Material, Process and Product Engineering (IC-MPPE)” (Project No 859480 ). This program is supported by the Austrian Federal Ministriy for Climate Action, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology (BMK) and the Austrian Federal Ministry for Digital and Economic Affairs (BMDW), represented by the Austrian Research Funding Association (FFG), and the Federal States of Styria, Upper Austria and Tyrol .

Funding Information:
The authors want to thank Bernhard Sartory and Dr. Jaroslav Wosik (Materials Center Leoben) for the SEM and EDX investigations. The financial support by the Austrian Federal Ministry for Digital and Economic Affairs and the National Foundation for Research, Technology and Development is gratefully acknowledged. Further, the authors gratefully acknowledge the financial support under the scope of the COMET program within the K2 Center ?Integrated Computational Material, Process and Product Engineering (IC-MPPE)? (Project No 859480). This program is supported by the Austrian Federal Ministriy for Climate Action, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology (BMK) and the Austrian Federal Ministry for Digital and Economic Affairs (BMDW), represented by the Austrian Research Funding Association (FFG), and the Federal States of Styria, Upper Austria and Tyrol.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Authors

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